Drawing on family papers, contemporary publications and archive research, this book presents a vivid picture of women's lives in the 1920s. Essential reading for students of women's history and social historians.
This book touches on several significant themes and adds considerably to our understanding of both the woman's movement and reform efforts in the 1920s. A clearly written study that is rewarding reading for any student of the 1920s and the woman's movement.
In The Spectacular Modern Woman, Liz Conor illustrates how technological advances inimage reproduction transformed Western industrial societies into visual or "ocularcentric"cultures with significant and complex consequences for women's lives. With the rise of massmedia, photography, and movies, a woman's visibility became a mark of her modernity, and theresult was at once liberating and confining, given the many narrow conceptions of what it meant tobe a modern woman. Focusing on the city girl in the metropolitan scene, the "Screen StruckGirl" in the cinematic scene, the mannequin in the commodity scene, the beauty contestant inthe photographic scene, the "primitive" woman in the late colonial scene, and the flapperin the heterosexual leisure scene, Conor shows how women's roles were intimately tied to thevisual culture of the day.
Critics often define the modernist period as the dichotomy between the high culture of edgy literary experimentation and the low culture of dime store novels, gritty detective stories, and other genre fiction, dismissing the significant group of American women writers who negotiated the delicate balance between critical and commercial success. Burdened with the derogatory label middlebrow by the literary elite, these authors of popular fiction nevertheless wrote scores of bestsellers, won awards, and had their works adapted into major Hollywood films. The unique contribution of these middlebrow moderns to early twentieth-century culture is now explored in this pathbreaking collection of original articles. Examining women writers from diverse backgrounds and works from a broad range of media, including literature, magazines, book clubs, advertising, radio, and film, the essayists show how authors such as Winnifred Easton, Jessie Redmon Fauset, Nella Larsen, Anita Loos, Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Edna Ferber, and Fannie Hurst bridged gaps in an audience increasingly fragmented by economic, racial, ethnic, and regional differences.
F. Scott Fitzgerald's wife, Zelda (1900-1948), was the model for his heroines and a celebrity in her own right, but little is known about her creative accomplishments. This autobiography aims to reveal her true nature and many talents. It traces the ups and downs of her life, from Alabama childhood to the glamorous years with Scott, whom she married when she was only 19, and to her death in a fire at a mental hospital.
Irresistibly charming, recklessly brilliant, Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald epitomized everything that was beautiful and damned about the Jazz Age. But behind the legend, there was a highly complex and competitive marriage–a union not of opposites but almost of twins who both inspired and tormented each other, and who were ultimately destroyed by their shared fantasies. Now in this frank, stylish, superbly written new book, Kendall Taylor tells the story of the Fitzgerald marriage as it has never been told before. Following the success of Fitzgerald’s first novel, This Side of Paradise, Scott and Zelda took New York by storm. Scott was recognized as the greatest American author of the twenties and everyone was fascinated with Zelda, his ravishing young wife, known as the model for all his flapper heroines. Ultimately it all fell apart, and Kendall Taylor tells us why. Drawing on previously suppressed material, including crucial medical records, Taylor sheds fresh light on Zelda’s depths and mysteries–her rich but largely unrealized artistic talents, her own ambitions that were unfulfilled because she was Mrs. F. Scott Fitzgerald, her passionate love affairs.
Legend views Zelda Fitzgerald as the mythical American Dream Girl of the 1920s, later as the Southern Belle whose brilliant husband Scott remained loyal despite her frequent breakdowns and final madness. The Zelda that Sally Cline reveals was a serious artist: a painter of extraordinary and disturbing vision, a talented dancer and a witty and original writer whose work Scott often used in his own novels but never acknowledged. Hitherto untapped sources, including medical evidence and interviews with Zelda's last psychiatrist, suggest that her insanity may have been less a specific clinical condition than the product of her treatment for schizophrenia and her husband's behaviour towards her. Cline shows how Scott's alcoholism, too, was as destructive of Zelda and their marriage as it was of him.
H. D. (Hilda Doolittle) was one of the central figures in literary modernism in the 1910s. She collaborated with Ezra Pound and others and played an important role in the early development of modernist poetry. This Cambridge Companion is a critical introduction to H. D. containing essays on all her major works. The first part explores the author's initial exclusion from the canon and her subsequent reinstatement; her tendency to merge fact with fiction in her autobiographical texts; her contribution to the little magazines; her relation to modernism; her representation of gender; and her influence on later generations of writers. The second part offers close and accessible critical analyses of H. D.'s style, her poems Hymen and Trilogy, her novels HERmione and Majic Ring, her understanding of translation as literary practice and of her notion of history in Tribute to Freud and The Gift.
H.D. and the Image is the only book-length study to explore how H.D.'s involvement with the moving image--from her appearance in avant-garde films, to her experience of film editing and her discursive writing on cinema--informs the textual practice of her poetry and prose. Focusing on the eclecticism of H.D.'s intellectual pursuits and drawing on a broad theoretical framework, which includes gender, film and cultural theory, the book makes a significant contribution to the increasingly multidisciplinary field of transatlantic modernist studies.
In Modernist Women Writers and War, Julie Goodspeed-Chadwick examines important avant-garde writings by three American women authors and shows that during World Wars I and II a new kind of war literature emerged -- one in which feminist investigation of war and trauma effectively counters the paradigmatic war experience long narrated by men. In the past, Goodspeed-Chadwick explains, scholars have not considered writings by women as part of war literature. They have limited "war writing" to works by men. But works by Djuna Barnes, H.D., and Gertrude Stein set in wartime reveal experiences and views of war markedly different from those of male writers. They write women and their bodies into their texts, thus creating space for female war writing, insisting on female presence in wartime, and, perhaps most significantly, critiquing war and patriarchal politics, often in devastating fashion. In her epic poem Trilogy (1944--1946), H.D. validates female suffering and projects a feminist, spiritual worldview that fosters healing from the ravages of war. The strategies employed by Barnes, H.D., and Stein in these texts serve to produce a new kind of writing, Goodspeed-Chadwick reveals, one that ineluctably constructs a female identity within, and authorship of, the war narrative.
This is the story of how a determined young woman with a notebook became one of the greatest writers of all time. It is a story that sparkles with wit and friendship, language and love, wicked jokes and passionate appreciation of ordinary things. In this illuminating new account, Alexandra Harris uses vivid flashes of detail to evoke Woolf’s changing backgrounds and preoccupations. We move from the close-packed rhythms of a Victorian childhood to the experiments of Bloomsbury and Woolf’s trial-and-error answers to the pressing question of how to live. We see her tackling challenging forms of writing, trying out different voices, following flights of fancy, and returning to earth. Above all, we see her making conscious decisions about what to do next. The book considers each of the novels in context, gives due prominence to a range of Woolf’s dazzlingly inventive essays, traces the contentious course of her afterlife, and shows why, seventy years after her death, Virginia Woolf continues to haunt and inspire us.
Virginia Woolf is one of the most influential figures in twentieth-century literature. She was original, passionate, vivid, dedicated to her art. Yet most writing about her still revolves around her social life and the Bloomsbury set. In this fresh, absorbing book, Julia Briggs puts the writing back at the center of Woolf's life, reads that life through her work, and mines the novels themselves to create a compelling new form of biography. Analyzing Woolf's own commentary on the creative process through her letters, diaries, and essays, Julia Briggs has produced a book that is a convincing, moving portrait of an artist, as well as a profound meditation on the nature of creativity. Virginia Woolf: An Inner Life-a brilliant new insight into a literary genius.
As a paradigmatic modernist author, Virginia Woolf is celebrated for the ways her fiction illuminates modern and contemporary life. Woolf scholars have long debated how context - whether historical, cultural, or theoretical - is to be understood in relation to her work, and how her work produces new insights into context. Drawing on an international field of leading and emergent specialists, this collection provides an authoritative resource for contemporary Woolf scholarship that explores the distinct and overlapping dimensions of her writings. Rather than survey existing scholarship, these essays extend Woolf studies in new directions by examining how the author is contextualized today. The collection also highlights connections between Woolf and key cultural, political, and historical issues of the twentieth century such as avant-gardism in music and art, developments in journalism and the publishing industry, political struggles over race, gender, and class, and the bearings of colonialism, empire, and war.
These essays explore music and its relationship to language, aesthetics, and culture in the life and work of the preeminent Modernist writer Virginia Woolf (Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, Orlando, A Room of One's Own, and other works). Approaching Woolf from musicology, literary criticism, and gender studies, the collection examines her musical background; music in her fiction and critical writings; and the importance of music in the Bloomsbury milieu and its role within the larger framework of Modernism. Making use of Woolf's diaries, letters, fiction, and the testimony of her contemporaries, these essays illuminate the rich and deeply musical nature of Woolf's works.